COLUMBIA, SC – Columbia’s winning streak ended at eight games, just one shy of tying a franchise record, as they fell to Kannapolis 5-2 Saturday night at Segra Park.
Kannapolis (23-24) started the scoring in the top of the first inning. Following back-to-back walks to start off the ball game, Wilfred Veras hit a two-RBI base knock to push the Cannon Ballers to a 2-0 lead. Then, in the third inning, Benyamin Bailey slammed a solo homer to right field to give the Cannon Ballers a 3-1 lead.
Kannapolis added another pair of runs of insurance in the eighth DJ Gladney and Wilfred Veras started the inning with back-to-back doubles and Benyamin Bailey closed out the inning with an RBI double to put the Cannon Ballers up 5-1. Veras finished the night 4-4 with two doubles and three RBI, and was certainly the difference maker for Kannapolis.
Shane Panzini (L, 0-3) had one of the best starts of his career following a rocky first inning. He fanned a career-high nine hitters, while allowing three runs, two in the first in the contest.
Columbia (26-20) answered with a run of their own in the bottom of the eighth. After a David Hollie lead-off double, Jean Ramirez popped out in foul territory up the first base side and Hollie scampered home with no one covering the bag.
Gavin Cross put the Fireflies on the board in the bottom of the first inning. Columbia’s designated hitter blasted his fourth round-tripper of the season beyond the right field wall to cut Kannapolis’s lead to 2-1.
Columbia closes out their series with the Kannapolis Cannon Ballers tomorrow evening at Segra Park at 5:05 pm. RHP Luinder Avila (5-8, 4.73 ERA) toes the rubber for Columbia, and Kannapolis counters with RHP Jared Kelley (1-4, 3.45 ERA).
Tomorrow is Sunday Funday at Segra Park. There will be an autograph session from 4-4:15 pm and following the game, kids can run the bases. Tickets are still available at FirefliesTickets.com.
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